Recent studies indicate that diabetes mellitus changes N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subunit composition and impairs cognitive functions. It also has been known that diabetes mellitus causes lipid peroxidation. This study examined the effects of streptozotocin-diabetes and insulin or gliclazide treatment on the hippocampal NMDA receptor subunit 2A and 2B (NR2A and NR2B) concentrations. In addition, malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were measured as a marker for lipid peroxidation. Eight weeks after the induction of diabetes MDA, levels were increased, and NR2A and NR2B concentrations were reduced. Insulin and gliclazide treatment partially prevented the reduction of NR2A and NR2B expression and prevented the elevation of MDA levels. There was no significant difference between the effects of insulin and gliclazide. The results suggest that the elevation of lipid peroxidation can be the primary biochemical disturbances in diabetes progression, and that changes in NMDA receptor subunit compositions can be involved in cognitive decline in diabetes.